The Great Debate on Glitter
I have told you before that Pinterest is not your friend. Styled food photo shoots are so trendy and popular because we love to look at them. Enough caramel dripping down the side of the cup or one more pearl of condensation on the iced beverage or the way the light dances on the ripe, heart shaped strawberry can sometimes make us stop what we are doing and plan a whole party around that vision. Bakers especially fight the Pinterest inspired battle regularly as someone is so moved by a creative impulse to serve a shiny, glittery cookie, cake or cupcake at their special event that they don't want to hear what you have to tell them about glitter not being food.
As unpopular as it is to acknowledge, I am just going to say it. Glitter. Is. Not. Food. At best, it is non-toxic. That just means that if you accidentally ingest some while making a sparkling Valentine craft, or if a flake or two falls to the cake from your sparkly, glittery Mr & Mrs. monogrammed wedding cake topper, there is no need to alert Poison Control. Glitter will not kill you. It still does not mean that you should serve it to someone with the intention that they eat it. Crayons and glue are just as non-toxic as glitter. But I don't see you topping your cookies with those either. There are a lot of sprinkles and shiny things that are specifically manufactured for use on baked products but they all are made out of sugar. Glitter (edible/decorative/ or otherwise) is still made out of....glitter.
Lord knows I love things that sparkle. I am the proud owner of a rather large collection of glitter and I even gave birth to a girl with glitter in her veins. But, I part ways with glitter when it comes to my cookies. Lately people have been requesting that I do a tutorial on glitter cookies or even sell edible glitter in the online store. I have decided against it. If I want something to shine, I will using sanding sugar or sprinkles.
Lately, I have noticed that the vendors that I buy from are re-labeling their products from saying Edible to Non-Toxic/ For decorative purposes only. So if you are crafting cupcake toppers or making gum paste flowers and you want to paint them entirely with gold and sprinkle with glitter, you go right ahead. People are not going to eat those anyway. IF you are at a hip and trendy wedding cake and you see a layer of the cake painted or glittered entirely in gold, chances are, it is a dummy layer and nobody will be served that section. Sometimes people will paint fondant in gold or glitter assuming that most people are going to peel off the fondant and not eat that but those are people without a delicious recipe for fondant. Some of the packaging advises to sprinkle very, very lightly with the glittery dust for the best results but that is like telling a six year old girl to use only a "few" sprinkles.
As with everything, when they are your cookies, you can do with them what you want. But as for me and my cookies, I am serving them as food. I don't feed unicorns.
Does this look pretty to you? It does to me too! But full disclosure, it is a scrumptious cookie, topped with glue and smothered in glitter. It might not kill you but I'm not serving it to you to eat.